In late 1973, Coolant Control co-founder Garry Ferraris was employed at Ford Motor Company as Director of Chemical and Metalworking Engineering. He was tasked with identifying and consulting a preeminent research firm outside of the cutting fluid business to take a fresh look at a years-long plant issue: due to bacterial degradation, Ford’s manufacturing fluids were disintegrating on the line and emitting a foul odor.
Garry contacted a bio-medical researcher who directed the National Research Laboratories in Cincinnati. Their successful collaboration on this project led to many more. Eventually a company was born. Coolant Control’s revolutionary approach to a fluid’s formulation, manufacture and management had a transformative effect on the automotive industry resulting in 181 patents around the globe. “We even had a patent in Russia before the fall of the Berlin Wall. We had a lot of courage in those days,” says Garry. “We were taking on the world.” This brilliant researcher’s son, Kurt Maurer, now heads the new order at Coolant Control.
“We hired Kurt right out of college in the 90s,”says Garry. “There’s smart, very smart and then there’s wicked smart. Well, Kurt was wicked smart. His major was in industrial engineering so everything he’s learned about chemistry through the years has been self-taught. Now it’s gotten to the point where he is teaching us.”
Mentored by Garry and Chairman of the Board, Jorge Costa, Kurt leads a close-knit team of second generation inventors and trailblazers. Although they are young, top management can boast a total of 120+ years of fluid industry experience much of it in the field. The new Coolant Control is just the latest of many incarnations that have allowed the company to remain healthy amid drastic changes in the automotive industry, a major US economic downturn, an emerging concern with the environment and increasingly accelerated machinery speed. “You have to anticipate innovation and trends to remain relevant,”says Jorge. “What remains constant is our commitment to providing the elegant solution for our customers. As their needs evolve, so do our processes and products.”
In the beginning, Coolant Control created additives to reconstitute customer fluids back to their original composition after being selectively depleted in the manufacturing process. At that time, CCI’s core capability was to solve issues for their customer through the application of proprietary technology and methods derived from extensive field research and diligent experimentation. “We took on the task of solving our customer’s problems. We had many arrows in our quiver,” says Jorge. Then in a major shift, Coolant Control purchased several client plants and began manufacturing their own fluids.
Coolant Control is again significantly altering their business model. Kurt and his group are refocusing their resources on research and on developing resources and technical support for sales. “My team knows that we have some major challenges ahead. But we are up for it!” says Kurt. “I am surrounded by smart people and we all love what we do. The founders of this company faced challenges head on and set the world on fire. I am determined to follow in their footsteps.”